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Fentanyl - Transdermal - Patient Medicine Information

> Why do I need this medicine?
> How do I use this medicine?
> What should I do if I have forgotten to use this medicine?
> When should I not use this medicine?
> What should I take note of while using this medicine?
> What side effects could I experience?
> Can I use this with other medicines?
> What special dietary instructions should I follow?
> How should I store this medicine?

 
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Why do I need this medicine?

Fentanyl is used in the management of severe chronic (long-term) pain.

How do I use this medicine?

Apply fentanyl patches to your skin exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label. Do not apply more or less than instructed by your doctor. Do not use it for a longer period of time than instructed by your doctor.

Instructions for application:
  1. Remove the patch from the protective foil pouch and peel away half of the liner. Do not touch the sticky side with your fingers.
  2. Apply the patch to a clean, dry area. You can choose any area on your chest, back, upper arm or flank (side of the body between the ribs and pelvis). Make sure that the area of skin is not oily, cut, blistered or irritated. The skin should be free of any powder, creams or lotions. If you need to clean the area of skin before applying the patch, use clean water only. Do not use soaps, oils or lotions. If the area of skin is hairy, you should clip (not shave) the hair. Do not put the patch near the waistline or where your belt or clothes may rub against it.
  3. For young children and people with mental function difficulties, the patch should be applied to the upper back to reduce the chance that the patch is removed.
  4. Peel away the other half of the liner. Press firmly on the skin for 20-30 seconds to ensure that the patch stays on the skin. 
  5. Wash your hands with water immediately after applying the patch.
  6. Replace the patch at around the same time every 48 to 72 hours depending on your doctor’s instructions. Change the site of application each time to avoid skin irritation. For example, if you put the patch on your right hip the first time, put it on your left hip the second time, and so on. Do not apply the Fentanyl patch to the same area of skin more than once in 7 days.
  7. After removing the patch, fold the sticky sides together and throw it away according to your doctor or pharmacist’s instructions. Wash your hands after removing the patch.
If the patch falls off, apply a new patch to a new area of skin and change the patch after the usual time.

If the side of the patch lifts up, use a plaster or bandage to secure it to your skin.

Do not cut the patch. The release pattern of the medicine will be affected if you cut the patch.

Fentanyl patches must be used regularly for them to be effective. Continue using Fentanyl patches even when you feel better. Do not stop using them unless instructed otherwise, as stopping them suddenly could worsen your condition.

Fentanyl patches must not be used to stop pain on an as-needed basis.

What should I do if I have forgotten to use this medicine?

Apply the missed dose as soon as you remember.

DO NOT apply extra patches to make up for the missed dose.

When should I not use this medicine?

Alert your doctor if you have:
  • never taken a strong painkiller (e.g. morphine, oxycodone, hydromorphone) before
  • lung disease (e.g. asthma)
  • a condition called “paralytic ileus” where the bowel does not work properly
  • pain that comes and goes, pain due to recent surgery, mild pain
as Fentanyl patches may not be suitable for you.

What should I take note of while using this medicine?

Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
  • liver disease
  • kidney disease
  • heart disease
  • stomach and bowel diseases including constipation
  • head injury, brain disease or brain tumors
  • thyroid disease
  • adrenal gland disorders
  • prostate enlargement
  • epilepsy (fits)
  • myasthenia gravis (a muscle weakness disorder)
  • excessive drinking or problems related to alcohol withdrawal
  • mood disorders
  • breathing difficulties during sleep
  • slow heartbeat
Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Avoid exposing the patch to heat sources such as heating pads, saunas, hot tubs and tanning lamps. Also try to avoid taking part in strenuous activities or exercise as these may increase your body temperature.

Take care not to accidentally transfer the patch to others (e.g. when carrying children or hugging). If someone else accidentally comes into contact with the sticky side of the patch, remove the patch, wash the area with water, and have them seek medical attention immediately.

Keep your appointments with your doctor. Your doctor needs to monitor your condition and check your response to the medication regularly.

What side effects could I experience?

Fentanyl patches may make you drowsy or dizzy. This medicine may cause you to suddenly fall asleep during your daily activities such as eating and watching television. If affected, do not drive or take part in any activity in which you need to be alert.

Other side effects include any of the following: nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, constipation, headache, difficulty sleeping, excessive sweating, tiredness, feeling cold, loss of appetite, difficulty urinating, and itching, redness or rashes at the site of application.

Some side effects may need immediate medical help. Alert your doctor quickly if you experience any of the following:
  • difficulty breathing
  • fever
  • depression, anxiety, confusion, hallucination (seeing or hearing things that are not non-existent)
  • fainting spells
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.

Can I use this with other medicines?

Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any of these medicines:
  • medicines for depression or mood disorders e.g. amitriptyline, fluoxetine, venlafaxine, lithium, chlorpromazine, mirtazapine, trazodone, phenlzine, tranylcypromine
  • medicines for fungal infections e.g. ketoconazole
  • medicines for epilepsy (fits or seizures) e.g. phenytoin, phenobarbital, carbamazepine
  • medicine for tuberculosis e.g. rifampicin
  • other painkillers e.g. morphine, buprenorphine, pentazocine, tramadol
  • medicines for sleep disorder or anxiety e.g. diazepam, midazolam, alprazolam
  • certain antibiotics e.g. clarithromycin, erythromycin, linezolid
  • medicines for HIV infection e.g. ritonavir, efavirenz
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with Fentanyl.

Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicine, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.

What special dietary instructions should I follow?

Avoid alcohol and grapefruit juice.

How should I store this medicine?

Store in a cool, dry and secure place away from the reach of children.

Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.

Dispose of patches according to your doctor or pharmacist’s instructions. Do not throw away patches with your household waste.

This information is independently developed by MIMS based on Fentanyl - Transdermal and is provided for your reference only. It is not a replacement for and should only be used in conjunction with full consultation with a licensed healthcare professional, the information provided by your pharmacist and/or the manufacturer of the medication. It may not contain all the available information you require and cannot substitute professional medical care, nor does it take into account all individual circumstances. Although great effort has been made to ensure content accuracy, we shall not be held responsible or liable for any claims or damages arising from the use or misuse of the information contained herein, its contents or omissions, or otherwise. Copyright © 2019 MIMS. All rights reserved. Powered by MIMS.com

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